A Lexicon for Ambiguous and Controversial Terms

Source: FSSPX News


The French version of the Lexicon for Ambiguous and Controversial Terms on the Family, Life and Ethical Questions will appear from publisher Editions Tequi on June 1, 2005. Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, President of the Pontifical Council for the Family, who is in charge of the work, will himself make the presentation in Paris.

The International Conference on Population and Development, organized by the U.N. in September 1994 in Cairo, is involuntarily responsible for this lexicon. In fact, certain Catholic participants, having noticed the use of ambiguous language by the heads of the U.N.P.F.A. (United Nations Population Fund) asked the Pontifical Council for the Family to publish the lexicon of ambiguous expressions used by the writers of the U.N. An example would be the term “termination of pregnancy” to mask abortion, or “extra-marital adventure” instead of adultery.

They fear that “this manipulation of language can fool the unsuspecting who would thus vote for motions opposed to their convictions during international assemblies”. Over a two-year period, the Pontifical Council for the Family came up with a study allowing people to see the real agenda behind the new semantics used not only by the U.N.P.F.A., but also by the media, politicians and members of bioethics committees.

This dicastery has gathered some sixty-odd titles or themes taken up by 72 experts from all over the world. Their articles gave rise to a lexicon of 867 pages, published in Italy in April 2003. The French version, prefaced by Msgr. Jean-Pierre Ricard, Archbishop of Bordeaux and President of the French Episcopal Conference, has a dozen new articles and 1008 pages.

The Lexicon takes up the following themes: the family (sexuality, homosexuality, procreation, reproductive health, abortion, foundation of the family and family structure, couples, marriage), life (demography, euthanasia, the status of the embryo, quality of life, genetics), general bioethics questions (biotechnology, bioethics committees, informed consent, manipulations of language, the lesser evil). It will be sold for 60 euros.